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Wireless technologies

Terms related to wireless technologies, including definitions about wireless devices and words and phrases about radio, microwave and infrared communication.

QI - WIR

  • Qi (Wireless Power Consortium) - Qi (pronounced CHEE) is a manufacturer-agnostic standard for wirelessly charging battery-powered devices.
  • Qik - Qik is an online video streaming service that allows anyone with a strong wireless Internet connection and a video camera-equipped smartphone to broadcast live events.
  • radar (radio detection and ranging) - Radar is an acronym for "radio detection and ranging.
  • radio charging - Radio charging is a wireless charging method used to charge items with small batteries and low power requirements, such as watches, hearing aids and wireless keyboards and mice.
  • rain fade - Rain fade is an interruption of wireless communication signals as a result of rain or snow droplets whose separation approximates the signal wavelengths.
  • real-time location system (RTLS) - A real-time location system (RTLS) is one of a number of technologies used to pinpoint the current geographic position and location of a target.
  • reconfigurable tactile display (RTD) - A reconfigurable tactile display (RTD) is a control interface that provides physical touch input, but that can be configured by programming.
  • resonance charging - Resonance charging is a wireless charging method for items that require large amounts of power, such as an electric car, robot, vacuum cleaner or laptop computer.
  • ringtone - On mobile phones, a ringtone is a brief audio file played to indicate an incoming call.
  • satellite - In general, a satellite is anything that orbits something else, as, for example, the moon orbits the earth.
  • satellite Internet connection - A satellite Internet connection is an arrangement in which the upstream (outgoing) and the downstream (incoming) data are sent from, and arrive at, a computer through a satellite.
  • sensor data - Sensor data is the output of a device that detects and responds to some type of input from the physical environment.
  • sensor hub - A sensor hub is a connection point for multiple sensors that uses a multipoint control unit (MCU), coprocessor or digital signal processor (DSP) to compile and process data gathered from those sensors.
  • service set identifier (SSID) - A service set identifier (SSID) is a sequence of characters that uniquely names a wireless local area network (WLAN).
  • short message - A short message is a brief text message sent to or from a mobile phone subscriber through the Short Message Service (SMS).
  • Short Message Service (SMS) - SMS (Short Message Service) is a service for sending short messages of up to 160 characters (224 characters if using a 5-bit mode) to mobile devices, including cell phones, smart phones and PDAs.
  • short message service center (SMSC) - A short message service center (SMSC) is the portion of a wireless network that handles SMS operations, such as routing, forwarding and storing incoming text messages on their way to desired endpoints.
  • Signalling Connection Control Part (SCCP) - Signalling Connection Control Part (SCCP) is a portion of International Telecommunication Union (ITU) recommendation Q.
  • silicon cockroach - Silicon cockroach is a term invented by networking expert John Sidgmore to describe the tiny portable electronic devices that are expected to become popular in the next few years, creating new behavior patterns while putting new demands on network bandwidth capacity.
  • SIMO (single input, multiple output) - SIMO (single input, multiple output) is an antenna technology for wireless communications in which multiple antennas are used at the destination (receiver).
  • single-user MIMO - Single-user MIMO (SU-MIMO) is a multi-transmitter and receiver technology for wireless communication that allocates the bandwidth of a wireless access point to a single device.
  • SISO (single input, single output) - SISO (single input, single output) refers to a wireless communications system in which one antenna is used at the source (transmitter) and one antenna is used at the destination (receiver).
  • small cell - Small cell is an overarching term for wireless network base stations with a low radio frequency power output, footprint and range.
  • Small Office Home Office (SOHO) - In information technology, SOHO is a term for the small office or home office environment and business culture.
  • smart antenna - A smart antenna is a digital wireless communications antenna system that takes advantage of diversity effect at the source (transmitter), the destination (receiver), or both.
  • smartphone - A smartphone is a cellular telephone with an integrated computer and other features not originally associated with telephones, such as an operating system, web browsing and the ability to run software applications.
  • SMS gateway - An SMS gateway is a website that allows users to send SMS messages from a web browser to people within the cell served by that gateway.
  • SMS spam (cell phone spam or short messaging service spam) - SMS spam (sometimes called cell phone spam) is any junk message delivered to a mobile phone as text messaging through the Short Message Service (SMS).
  • sniff subrating - Sniff subrating is a Bluetooth feature designed to increase battery life as much as 500 percent for devices whose typical usage involves a significant amount of inactive time.
  • soft handoff - In cellular telephone communication, soft handoff refers to the overlapping of repeater coverage zones, so that every cell phone set is always well within range of at least one repeater (also called a base station).
  • software-defined radio (SDR) - Software-defined radio (SDR), sometimes shortened to software radio (SR), refers to wireless communication in which the transmitter modulation is generated or defined by a computer, and the receiver uses a computer to recover the signal intelligence.
  • solar fade (sun interference) - Solar fade, also called sun interference, is a phenomenon that occurs in satellite communications on certain occasions when the downlink signal is aligned with the sun's position and it is overcome by signal noise from the sun.
  • spatial division multiple access (SDMA) - Also see frequency division multiple access (FDMA) and time division multiple access (TDMA).
  • Specialized Mobile Radio (SMR) - Also see Enhanced Specialized Mobile Radio (ESMR).
  • StarBand - StarBand is a broadband Internet service provider (ISP) that uses geostationary satellites to provide always-on connection independent of other media.
  • Stratellite - A Stratellite is a rigid framed airship that hovers in a fixed position in the lower stratosphere and carries one or more repeaters to create wireless communication networks.
  • superheterodyne - Superheterodyne refers to a method of designing and building wireless communications or broadcast equipment, particularly radio receivers.
  • SWAN (Structured Wireless-Aware Network) - SWAN (Structured Wireless-Aware Network) is a technology that incorporates a wireless local area network (wireless LAN or WLAN) into a wired wide-area network.
  • T1 (T-1) - Also see the T-carrier system, of which the T1 is a part.
  • talk time - In customer relationship management (CRM), talk time is the amount of time a call center agent spends with a caller during a transaction.
  • TD-SCDMA (time division synchronous code division multiple access) - TD-SCDMA (time division synchronous code division multiple access) is a mobile telephone standard for wireless network operators who want to move from a second generation (2G) wireless network to a third-generation (3G) one.
  • TDMA (time division multiple access) - TDMA (time division multiple access) is a technology used in digital cellular telephone communication that divides each cellular channel into three time slots in order to increase the amount of data that can be carried.
  • TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) - TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) is a set of standards developed by the European Telecommunications Standardisation Institute (ETSI) that describes a common mobile radio communications infrastructure throughout Europe.
  • text on nine keys (T9) - Text on nine keys (T9) is a system that lets fixed and mobile phone users send text messages by pressing a number key for each letter in the message -- effectively making a keyboard out of the nine numeric phone entry keys.
  • transceiver - A transceiver is a combination transmitter/receiver in a single package.
  • Transmeta - Transmeta is a Silicon Valley start-up company known for its recruitment of high profile talent and its Crusoe chip, designed for mobile Internet computing.
  • transponder - A transponder is a wireless communications, monitoring, or control device that picks up and automatically responds to an incoming signal.
  • traveling-wave tube (TWT) - A traveling-wave tube (TWT) is a specialized vacuum tube used in wireless communications, especially in satellite systems.
  • triangulation - Triangulation is a process by which the location of a radio transmitter can be determined by measuring either the radial distance, or the direction, of the received signal from two or three different points.
  • tropospheric propogation - Radio waves can propagate over the horizon when the lower atmosphere of the earth bends, scatters, and/or reflects the electromagnetic fields.
  • two-way pager - A two-way pager is a pager that allows you to send data as well as receive it.
  • UHF (ultrahigh frequency) - The UHF (ultrahigh frequency) range of the radio spectrum is the band extending from 300 MHz to 3 GHz.
  • ultra wideband - Ultra wideband (also known as UWB or as digital pulse wireless) is a wireless technology for transmitting large amounts of digital data over a wide spectrum of frequency bands with very low power for a short distance.
  • UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) - UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Service) is a third-generation (3G) broadband, packet-based transmission of text, digitized voice, video, and multimedia at data rates up to 2 megabits per second (Mbps).
  • unified messaging (unified messaging system or UMS) - Unified messaging (sometimes referred to as the unified messaging system or UMS) is the handling of voice, fax, and regular text messages as objects in a single mailbox that a user can access either with a regular e-mail client or by telephone.
  • USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) - USSD (Unstructured Supplementary Service Data) is a Global System for Mobile(GSM) communication technology that is used to send text between a mobile phone and an application program in the network.
  • vehicle to infrastructure (V2I or v2i) - Vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I or V2X) is a communication model that allows vehicles to share information with the components that support a country's highway system.
  • VHF (very high frequency) - The VHF (very high frequency) range of the radio spectrum is the band extending from 30 MHz to 300 MHz.
  • video telephony - Video telephony is full-duplex, real-time audio-visual communication between or among end users.
  • visible light communication (VLC) - Visible light communication (VLC) is the use of visible light as a method of wirelessly transmitting data.
  • Visor - Visor is the trade name of a handheld computer manufactured by Handspring.
  • VMware Horizon Mobile - VMware Horizon Mobile is mobile virtualization and application wrapping software that lets IT administrators control corporate data and applications on end users' smartphones and tablets.
  • voice activation detection (VAD) - In Voice over IP (VOiP), voice activation detection (VAD) is a software application that allows a data network carrying voice traffic over the Internet to detect the absence of audio and conserve bandwidth by preventing the transmission of "silent packets" over the network.
  • voice portal (vortal) - A voice portal (sometimes called a vortal) is a Web portal that can be accessed entirely by voice.
  • voice-enabled e-mail (voice-activated e-mail) - Voice-enabled e-mail (sometimes referred to as voice-activated e-mail) uses voice recognition and speech synthesis technologies to enable users to access their e-mail from any telephone.
  • VoIP phone - A VoIP phone is a hardware- or software-based telephone designed to use voice over IP (VoIP) technology to send and receive phone calls over an IP network.
  • VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) - VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) is a satellite communications system that serves home and business users.
  • VxWorks - VxWorks is a real-time operating system (RTOS) that can be used in embedded systems.
  • W-CDMA (Wideband Code-Division Multiple Access) - Also see CDMA, CDMA One, and CDMA2000.
  • WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) - WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) is a specification for a set of communication protocols to standardize the way that wireless devices, such as cellular telephones and radio transceivers, can be used for Internet access.
  • war driving (access point mapping) - War driving, also called access point mapping, is the act of locating and possibly exploiting connections to wireless local area networks while driving around a city or elsewhere.
  • warchalking (war chalking) - Warchalking is a grass roots effort to create a standard iconography for public Wi-Fi access.
  • WAX (Wireless Abstract XML) - Wireless Abstract XML (WAX) is an abstract markup language and associated tools that facilitate wireless application development.
  • Web slate - A Web slate is a wireless Internet appliance that consists of a liquid crystal display (LCD) with a touch screen that allows the user to view and interact with Web pages.
  • Web texting - Web texting is two-way text messaging from the Web to a handheld mobile device, usually a cellular phone.
  • whip antenna - A whip antenna is a single-element antenna that can be used with anunbalanced feed line such as coaxial cable,or attached directly to a wirelesstransmitter, receiver, or transceiver.
  • white space - White space, in a communications context, refers to underutilized portions of the radio frequency (RF) spectrum vacated in the absence of analog broadcast television.
  • white space device (WSD) - A white space device is an FCC-certified wireless device that can be used without an exclusive broadcast license in the RF spectrum below 700 MHz: underutilized, unlicensed portions of the spectrum called white space.
  • White Space Wi-Fi (White-Fi) - White space Wi-Fi, also known as White-Fi, specified in IEEE 802.
  • Wi-Fi (802.11x standard) - Wi-Fi is the popular term for high-frequency wireless local area network (WLAN) technology and a standard that has gained acceptance in many companies as an alternative to a wired LAN.
  • Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax) - Wi-Fi 6 is a standard for wireless internet that replaces the 802.
  • Wi-Fi Alliance - The Wi-Fi Alliance is a wireless industry organization that exists to promote wireless technologies and interoperability.
  • Wi-Fi backscattering - Wi-Fi backscattering is a low-power communications technology that uses radio frequency (RF) signals as a power source and reuses the existing Wi-Fi infrastructure to provide RF-powered devices with Internet connectivity.
  • Wi-Fi calling - Wi-Fi calling is software used to place and receive calls over Wi-Fi on a smartphone, which would typically use a cellular connection for calls.
  • Wi-Fi HaLow (802.11ah) - HaLow is based on the WiFi Alliance 802.
  • Wi-Fi Multimedia (WMM) - Wi-Fi Multimedia (WMM), previously known as Wireless Multimedia Extensions (WME), is a subset of the 802.
  • Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) - Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) is a security standard for users of computing devices equipped with wireless internet connections, or Wi-Fi.
  • Wi-Fi Sense - Windows Wi-Fi Sense allows Windows 10 users to get Internet access from public hotspots and private wireless local area networks (WLANs) that have been shared by friends.
  • Wibree (Baby Bluetooth) - Wibree, also called Baby Bluetooth, is a low-power wireless local area network (WLAN) technology that facilitates interoperability among mobile and portable consumer devices such as pagers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), wireless computer peripherals, entertainment devices and medical equipment.
  • Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) - Wide Area Augmentation System (WAAS) is a navigation assistance system used to improve the accuracy and precision of global positioning system (GPS).
  • WiMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) - WiMAX is a wireless industry coalition whose members organized to advance IEEE 802.
  • Windows Phone 7 - Windows Phone 7 is a Microsoft operating system for smartphones.

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